Mayor’s Update March 2017
Dear Resident and Business Owner,
The Mayor and Council have begun the New Year with much on its plate.
Our Borough Engineer, Paul Ferriero, has advised that the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection has ordered the Borough to take remedial action to correct structural deficiencies of the dam at Mountain Valley Park. Construction must begin by June 23, 2017. The estimated cost of this project, which includes the dredging of the pond, runs from $500,000 to a possible $900,000 (if the dredging spoils are found to be contaminated). If the Borough chooses not to move forward with a repairing the dam, the DEP can act to remove the dam at the Borough’s expense. If the Mayor and Council were to breach the dam in lieu of repairing it and draining Mountain Valley Park Pond, the estimate cost of doing so would be approximately $250,000. As the dam forms part of Mountain Avenue, the spillway would still require rehabilitation and the Borough would be required to comply with DEP requirements for restoration of the pond site as a stream. A presentation from Mr. Ferriero on this project can we found on the Borough’s website under Current News and Information.
The Mayor and Council feel it is important to maintain the dam and the park. For those reasons, will pursue repairing the dam. As for funding this project, the governing body is considering using funds, which have been collected via taxes, from the Borough’s Open Space, Recreation, Farmland and Historic Preservation Trust Fund. Future discussions on the funding formula would center on using the trust to pay for the entire project (while setting aside a certain amount in future years to pay the trust back), bond for the project, or formulate some type of hybrid model.
The Borough Council adopted Ordinance #01-17 which declares the Borough intent to become an aggregator of electric power on behalf of its residential users of electricity pursuant to the Government Energy Act of 2003. This program will allow for residential users of electricity to save approximately 12-15% on their electricity bills. As the program gets started, residents will receive information which provides details such as the new rate, term, chosen supplier and the deadline for opting out. Further information on this program can be found on the borough’s website under Current News and Information found on the home page or call Borough Administrator Rick Merkt.
As most of you now know, DPW Superintendent Ken O’Brien has started his new job with the Borough of Madison in the same capacity. I would like to thank Ken for all his contributions to Mendham Borough. The Mayor and Council are in the process of interviewing prospective candidates to replace Ken. I hope to have somebody in place by the end of April. In order to give ourselves time to select the most qualified individual to be our next DPW Superintendent, the Mayor and Council have appointed Robert J. Venezia to serve as our Interim Certified Public Works Manager. Bob served previously as a DPW Superintendent in the Borough of Chatham and the Borough of New Providence.
Congratulations to Michael DiMaio who joined the Mendham Fire Department as a junior member.